Biometrics is getting big. So is Toronto-based Bioscrypt. That was the word from financial analysis company Deloitte, which published its 2005 Canadian Technology Fast 50 companies list on Wednesday.
The rankings, which placed biometric identity verification company Bioscrypt in fifth place, were based on the company's percentage of growth from 2000 to 2004.
Bioscrypt clocked in with a 4,724 percent growth in revenue (yes, that number's correct), that stems from the company's expansion in both the access control and time-and-attendance markets.
According to Bioscrypt's director of investor relations Matthew Bogart, the company made its move early in 2000 when it bought out California-based company BII and catapulted itself into the identity verification markets with a verification algorithm that the industry could use.
The company made its presence known in the physical security access control market, and today, at the industry's tradeshows like the ASIS Seminar and Exhibits or the ISC West Show in Las Vegas, you're likely find that the company's proprietary matching technology is being used in many of the top access control devices.
It's staying focused to the matching technology, and not the matching equipment, says Bogart, that has taken the company to where it is today.
"Our core strength has always been on the algorithm side, not the manufacturing of readers," he says. "[To grow,] we've had to build a vehicle to bring our technology to the market, and that vehicle essentially was physical access control."
Bogart explains that the company has been able to take off because it specialized in a pattern-matching algorithm that recognizes patterns in fingerprints, rather than trying -- like many providers do -- to match minutiae points from the scan and the original file. According to Bogart, what the company has found is that the pattern-matching works better for identity verification, such as comparing a known user who has presented a card to the biometric data set that he/she is supposed to correlate too, while minutiae algorithms work better for identity recognition, such as comparing an unknown user to a large file of fingerprints such as an FBI database.
So after tremendous growth that saw the company's revenues spike from $336,000 in 2000 to $16 million 2004, Bogart says that the company is taking what it's learned in physical security access verification and applying that to logical (IT) access for computer users at a corporation. Indeed, the move is already beginning to work, with Bioscrypt having recently created a partnership with Hewlett Packard that puts the company's credential manager on the HP platform. There's also the recent alignment with smart card maker Axalto, whose technology has been well received in the area of logical security.
So can we expect next year? Another "top 5" finish? Bogart says that those kinds of rankings are impossible to predict but that as the company forges ahead, the key will be to allow the company to offer full systems solutions in the access management environment, such as the company is already starting to do with their VeriSoft software application. It's not just verification of users, explains Bogart, but the full management of their credentials that's become important, whether you're dealing with physical security or IT security.